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North Sea/Elgin: Work begins to stop gas leak - WWF Scotland comment

15 May 2012

Nearly two months after Total's Elgin platform was evacuated when gas began leaking, work is underway to stop the escape. [1]

Commenting on the news, Dr Richard Dixon, Director of WWF Scotland said:

"Good luck to Total in stopping the gas leak from the Elgin platform. In nearly two months since the leak started around 5,500 tonnes of the potent greenhouse gas methane has escaped, equivalent to adding around 45,000 extra cars on the roads of the UK for a whole year.

"The serious leak at the Elgin platform underlines the risks of the offshore oil industry, even in the familiar waters of the North Sea, and reinforces our concerns about the even riskier deepwater drilling in the Arctic. We should be trying to give up our addiction to oil and gas, not seeking it out in more and more difficult places."

Notes to Editors

[1] Total press statement

Start of the well intervention operation to stop the Elgin leak

Total has today started the planned well intervention operation to stop the leak from the G4 well on the Elgin complex.

The well intervention operation got underway at 09hrs20 (local time) this morning with the pumping of heavy mud into the well from the main support vessel, the West Phoenix semi-submersible drilling rig, via a temporary pipeline connected to the G4 wellhead.

Depending on the precise conditions inside the well, the operation itself and the subsequent observation period will last a few days before it is possible to confirm whether the operation has been fully effective.

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